Here are three workouts my son and I will be doing over Christmas break. These are a combination of circuits I’ve done before and examples of what my son does on a weekly basis. (Disclaimer: I’m not a personal trainer, just a dad/coach. You should check with your doctor and certified personal trainer before beginning any new exercise/strength program).

“Hawksville.” This was one of my favorite workouts to hate when I was in high school. “Hawksville” was named for our catching coach, who deserves all the credit for wearing us out with this one. It seems simple, but it will kick you in the tail if you go after it hard. Here’s how it works:

  • Do each of the following for 30 seconds at a time, with no rest between. Do the entire circuit five times. Rest five minutes, then repeat it.
    • High knees. Run in place while focusing on pulling your knees up to waist level with each stride. This is to be a quick movement. Land on the front half of your foot each time.
    • Heels up. Run in place while trying to kick yourself in the butt with your heels. Again, quick movement, but don’t allow the quickness to prevent the lifting of the heel.
    • Mountain climbers. Check out this site for basic instruction, including a video demonstration.
    • Crunches. Yes, old-fashioned crunches. Not neck lifts, however. Get those shoulders off the floor!

Push-up pyramid. You can build the pyramid from the bottom or the top. From the top is easier. From the bottom is more challenging. It’s simple: do one push-up, then a 30-second plank (see instruction here), then two push-ups and another 30-second plank. Add a push-up each set until you complete 15 sets. In the end, you’ll have done 120 push-ups and 7:30 of planks.

Body weight bonanza. Equipment needed: pull-up bar (here’s the one my son uses), two chairs, 5-15lb weight that can be held easily in the hands (can be something from around the house or a kettlebell). This is a circuit workout. Do all exercises without rest between. Take a three-minute rest between sets. Complete 5 sets.

  • Overhand pull-ups. Do them right. And, if you’re crazy, use some variations. Do as many as possible with perfect form.
  • Wall sits. Check it out here. Hold it for 30 seconds. For variations, alternate raising a leg every 10 seconds.
  • Dips. Watch video here. For a greater challenge, place feet on a second chair. To make it easier, place feet on the floor with knees bent. For the ultimate challenge, keep only one foot on the chair or floor. Do as many as possible with perfect form.
  • Squats. Instruction here. Complete as many as possible with perfect form.

None of these require a gym membership or expensive equipment. Even with Christmas Day and New Year’s Day off, we will have have done a total of 12 workouts over the break. And, if a player can do more than just eat and sleep over Christmas break, he’s developing a discipline that can’t help but pay off down the road.